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Male Breast Reduction

Male Breast Reduction Surgery

Also known as Gynecomastia

What is a Male Breast Reduction?

Gynecomastia is swelling of the breast tissue in boys or men, caused by an imbalance of the hormones estrogen and testosterone. Gynecomastia can affect one or both breasts, sometimes unevenly. Newborns, boys going through puberty and older men may develop gynecomastia as a result of normal changes in hormone levels, though other causes also exist. Generally, gynecomastia isn’t a serious problem, but it can be tough to cope with the condition. Men and boys with gynecomastia sometimes have pain in their breasts and may feel embarrassed.

What to expect during the Gynecomastia procedure?

The most popular recent technique for the surgical treatment of gynecomastia is male breast reduction through liposuction. Liposuction alone is indicated when the skin tone is adequate for retraction into a favorable position following removal of breast and fatty tissue. Liposuction may be performed in any number of ways: laser assisted emulsification/subcutaneous tightening, ultrasonic emulsification and finally with an oscillating intracannular fat cutting curette. However, liposuction alone has its limitations. In individuals with dense breasts, passing liposuction cannulae through this tissue is often very difficult and as a result there may be an under-correction. In individuals with loose skin, a worsening of the ptosis (drooping) may occur, if liposuction alone is performed.

In common with mastopexy and breast reduction techniques, when the breast tissue is significantly ptotic and lax, some type of skin resection is needed in order to lift the nipple areola and to restore skin tone. Many choices have been described in respective order of increasing complexity: superior crescent mastopexy, superior crescent mastopexy with lateral limb extensions of elliptical skin resection, peri-areolar mastopexy, tear drop mastopexy, formal anchor incision Wise pattern inferior pedicle reduction and nipple areola free graft after a horizontal elliptical breast resection to the infra-mammary crease.

What to expect during the recovery for the Male Breast Reduction procedure?

Male breast reduction is typically performed with general anesthesia. As the anesthesia wears off, you can expect to feel tired, groggy, or nauseous. While you can usually return home the same day as your procedure, you’ll need someone to drive you. Once you return home, plan to spend several days recuperating from surgery before gradually returning to your normal activity level. Any stitches are usually removed about a week after the procedure, when you return for a follow-up visit to check your recovery progress.

Following male breast reduction surgery, patients can expect to feel some discomfort or tenderness in the chest area. Any pain you feel can be controlled with medications. Common side effects include bruising, swelling, and temporary numbness caused by the disruption of nerve connections. These side effects can be expected whether you undergo excision-only breast reduction or procedures involving liposuction. Most of these side effects should subside within a week or two, although some degree of swelling or numbness may last up to six months.

Frequently Asked Questions

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To find out more about available treatments and procedures, request a consultation with Dr. Moulton-Barrett at one of his Bay Area offices. Board certified plastic surgeon Rex Moulton-Barrett, M.D., offers advanced care and procedures for Bay Area residents. He has offices in Alameda and Brentwood, CA.

Our Clinics

Alameda Clinic


2070 Clinton Ave
Fourth Floor
Alameda, CA 94501

Phone  (510) 864-1800


Brentwood Clinic

1280 Central Blvd
Suite J-5
Brentwood, CA 94513

Phone  (925) 240-8775



Alameda Location:

2070 Clinton Ave, Alameda, CA 94501


Brentwood Location

1280 Central Blvd, Suite J-5, Brentwood, CA 94513